1. FoxPaw
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    FoxPaw Senior Member

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    Are there more synonyms for "smile"?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by FoxPaw, Nov 29, 2011.

    In one of my stories, I have a character who perpetually smiles. One of the most chipper people you'd ever meet. She rarely drops her smile, even when things are looking bad and bleak. A problem comes with this however: there aren't that many synonyms for "smile."

    I used smile, grin, beam... and I can't think of any more. I've tried looking in a thesaurus, but I couldn't find any more there either.

    Now, I know there are different words to describe upward movement of the lips, like smirking, etc. But smirking implied deviousness and I'm looking for words that mean just a genuine, sincere smile. Are there any more than those three?
     
  2. Jethelin
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    Jethelin Member

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    Bah! Just start using different languages! joking...I found Simper. But I didn't know what it meant until I searched so I don't know if it's the best choice. "Smile in an affectedly coquettish, coy, or ingratiating manner."
     
  3. Protar
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    Protar Active Member

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    I'll be honest I can't think of direct synonyms but you can still do a lot. Stuff like "her face was lit up as usual" for an off the top of my head example or "she wore that perpetual smile of hers". If you make it interesting it shouldn't be a problem.
     
  4. lostinwebspace
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    lostinwebspace Active Member

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    I don't thikn you need to constantly reference her smile. If you use happy words or happy body language, people will automatically assume a smile. If all she has to show she's happy is a smile, readers might start to think it's fake.
     
  5. AnonyMouse
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    AnonyMouse Contributing Member Contributor

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    I second lostinwebspace's advice. If the smile is genuine, it should encompass more than just her face. Therefore, you don't have to constantly reference the smile, but can support it by occasionally referencing her other ways of expressing happiness. Perhaps she has a gentle or serene way of moving, graceful and pleasant. Maybe she laughs frequently. Perhaps she often says kind or encouraging things. True happiness manifests in more ways than just one. Actually, the same could be said of just about any emotion.

    If the smile is as constant as you say it is, you should only reference it in its absence. Once you've established that she smiles all the time, you no longer need to continually tell us "she's still smiling." It's a given. But in the rare moments when she stops smiling, or when her smile falters, those moments should be treated with the utmost importance.
     
  6. cheesecake
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    cheesecake New Member

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    I agree with both lostinwebspace and anonymouse. If she's always a happy and smiley person, then maybe make the point to the reader in the beginning. After that just note when she's NOT smiling or when her smile changes to not so genuine and force, so forth.
     
  7. thabear637
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    thabear637 Member

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    I agree with everyone, you probably shouldn't keep mentioning her smile too much, but if you do need another word, how about Smirk

    Edit: Whoops..I see you mentioned smirk in your sentence below. oh well, I thought I had something.
     
  8. Devrokon
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    Devrokon Senior Member

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    Lol. I thought you said simile at first. Grin?
     
  9. FoxPaw
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    FoxPaw Senior Member

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    It's unfortunate that those seem to be the only three words. However, thank you everyone for posting alternatives! I actually hadn't thought about the fact that mentioning her smile so much might make it sound insincere. I'll cut down on it from now on.

    Actually, now that it was brought up, if she ever did lose her smile, the person who caused it would be in some serious trouble, ha! That said, thank you for giving that suggestion! I'll go back and edit that when I have time. (Also, I forgot about that whole, smiling reaching other parts of the face so maybe I could add in her eyes lighting up...? Thanks for reminding me of that too.)
     
  10. ScreamsfromtheCrematory
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    ScreamsfromtheCrematory Member

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    You don't necessarily need words to show that she's smiling. If you describe her as vibrant, joyous, and say bursting with a sort of personal uplifting energy and a face that lights up when it looks around, your audience will probably think she's smiling pretty hard without you even having to go out and literally say she is.
     
  11. AmyHolt
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    AmyHolt Contributing Member

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    How about, the corners of her mouth turned up?
    Although I think you already have had the wonderful advice.
     
  12. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    http://thesaurus.com/ and http://dictionary.reference.com/

    Always cross check things you get out of a thesaurus with a dictionary. A thesaurus has synonyms but they won't necessarily mean the same thing.
     

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